The saying "modern problems require modern solutions" rings true when it comes to extending the use of mobile technologies to enterprise environments. While some technicians may be able to get by using consumer-grade smartphones or laptops connected to Wi-Fi or public LTE/5G networks, there are plenty of situations where these types of deployments fall short from a performance and reliability standpoint.
For those enterprise environments looking for a more robust solution that provides the utmost in wireless network connectivity combined with lightweight and ruggedized mobile devices outfitted with useful, field-ready features, Celona and Zebra have you covered.
TC26 CBRS: Zebra's new line of rugged mobile computer
Zebra has recently refreshed their line of touch computers including the new TC26 handheld (MSRP ~$700) running a customized Android operating system - and come with private spectrum option for LTE wireless connectivity, specifically the CBRS spectrum (LTE band 48) in the United States.
These new model complement the company’s existing L10 tablet (MSRP ~$3000) lineup that runs on Windows 10, enabled with CBRS support.
CBRS capable Zebra devices provide field technicians with waterproof, drop-proof and dust-proof portable computing that can run even the most performance-intensive Android or Windows-based applications with battery life that lasts long into a double shift. Additionally, Zebra devices come standard with SIM card slots (TC26 also supports eSIM technology) allowing them to natively connect to private and public cellular networks.
Not only that, but Zebra mobile computers also bring extra features and functionality to the table that are tailor-made for work in mobile environments including warehouse/manufacturing, public safety, healthcare and retail. Field specific features include:
- 2-way radio and push-to-talk (PTT) capabilities
- High-resolution, ultra-bright displays for outdoor viewing
- Enhanced touch screen sensitivity for gloved operation
- NFC and CPOC payment options
- Advanced location/positioning
- Built-in barcode scanner for accurate data capture
- Field-replaceable batteries
- Peripheral connectivity options through USB and Bluetooth 5.0
- Reliable Connectivity using the CBRS spectrum is the key to field operator efficiency gains with a lower TCO
Of course, when it comes to work out in the field, effectiveness of mobile computing powered by Zebra can be stifled when not paired with the right wireless connectivity solution. In both indoor and outdoor situations where wireless connectivity for Zebra devices is required, Wi-Fi is often rife with dead spots and spectrum interference which translates to unpredictable network performance. This leaves field operators without the right application and communication tools to perform their duties in an effective and efficient manner.
When it comes to wireless coverage in industrial, medical and retail field locations for the Zebra devices, the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a Celona private LTE/5G network will end up being lower than alternatives due to improved TX/RX coverage capabilities found in Celona LTE/5G access points.
For more information, you can find the configuration steps to enable private LTE connectivity on a Celona network in these two articles: for the Zebra L10 tablet and the Zebra TC26 CBRS mobile computer.
Celona engineering team has performed extensive testing with Zebra touch computers to ensure they operate seamlessly and efficiently with guaranteed wireless performance thanks to Celona’s use of interference-free CBRS spectrum and the inclusion of their patent-pending MicroSlicing™ technology.
MicroSlicing™ is the key to predictable performance as it allows RAN administrators to identify mission-critical traffic and apply strict quality of service (QoS) policy - and enforce throughput, latency and packet error rate metrics on a per application basis. This provides field operators with an added level of confidence that they will have the right computing tools and communications platforms to complete field tasks on the very first visit.
Right technologies for field workers
For workers to truly be efficient while working in the field, it calls for the right mix of technologies to be placed in their hands that can handle go-anywhere, do-anything tasks. A Celona LTE/5G network combined with the latest Zebra mobile computers operating in the CBRS spectrum gives operators the right combination of advanced network connectivity with powerful and portable computing tools necessary to perform their duties in the harshest and most demanding work environments.
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